Resources and tips for the self-published author.

Publishing News Roundup Series: How Has COVID Affected Book Sales?

by Maureen Crisp •  May 1, 2020  •   Follow

Published in News, Publishing Tips  •  No comments

Every industry has been impacted by COVID-19. How has the book industry panned out?

There seem to be both good and bad impacts on the book market during social distancing. What we can say for sure is that it is changing the market, the consumers, and the professional publishing industry as a whole. As the market shifts, we have to wonder, will this continue after all this is over, or will things begin to shift back? As book sales shift between different types of publishing media, how will the market shift to accommodate it?



When we get back to normal- will it be different?

This week there were interesting anecdotes from around the book publishing community on how the continuous lockdown has affected book sales. 
Audiobook sales and podcast listening has tanked. When I thought about my own life I realized why. There are no commutes. People’s consumption of podcasts and audiobooks during their work commute drove audiobook sales. I’m behind in so many episodes in my regular podcast listening I should just escape to the car for an hour and catch up on them in the driveway. 
One country that seems to be bucking this trend is Sweden– they aren’t in lockdown therefore audiobook sales are booming.
Mike Shatzkin has been looking at the cracks that have been exposed in the publishing industry because of the pandemic. How reliant is everybody on a functioning supply chain? With paper produced in China in short supply… alternative editions seem to be the way forward but for the price-conscious having an ebook priced the same as a paper book is not going to cut it. 
Kris Rusch has been looking into the past to see how publishing fared the last time there was a big disruption to the publishing industry. There wasn’t an indie book scene back then so what happened to writers. The title of her post is train wreck so that should give you some ideas. She explores the ways that writers could be much better off this time.
Penguin Random House, the biggest publisher, has been doing some experimenting according to The New Publishing Standard. They have opened an online branch in India’s Amazon platform… get ready rest of the world?
Anne R Allen has a great post on successful writers and detectives. They have lots in common. Check out the post to see your alternative career.

In The Craft Section,

Know your genre- Scott Myers
Writing fight scenes for female characters– Aiki Flinthart- Bookmark

In The Marketing Section,

9 tips for creating Amazon ads that convert– Dave Chesson – Bookmark
8 ways to sell books locally– Penny Sansevieri- Bookmark

To Finish,

The new normal is working from home surrounded by others who are also working from home. Trying to retain sanity and normality can be challenging. The virtual world is at your beck and call. Here are some ways you can keep in contact with your fans and peers. Just remember to have a great bookshelf behind you. The above picture would be just perfect!

About Maureen Crisp

Maureen Crisp has been writing her weekly publishing roundups for over seven years. She is a traditionally published children's author as well as indie-published. She lives in New Zealand and is heading the team organising the 4th National Conference of Children's Writers and Illustrators. She is currently trying her hand at writing a children’s book series if she can drag herself away from forever tweaking her Mars novel or obsessing over space.